Published on July 14th, 2019 | by William Charles20
‘CEO Of The Year’ Marriott’s Arne Sorenson Attempts To Defend Resort Fees
Marriott’s CEO, Arne Sorenson (who was comically named CEO of the year in April) and who has brought us such wisdom as SPG integration issues being ‘noises around the edges‘ and that passport data must be collected during online booking (that doesn’t happen) has some more wisdom, this time defending the practice of charging resort fees in a LinkedIn interview.
In the interview Sorenson tries to make a few points that I’d like to dispute:
- Resort fees are equivalent to baggage fees that airlines charge. Consumers don’t like these fees, but they are necessary to operate. Except for the fact that resort fees are mandatory and baggage fees aren’t, which is the main reason people have issues with resort fees in the first place.
- Resort fees are a good way of packaging benefits. Sorenson claims that it’s better to not charge for things like paddleboard rental and bike rental and instead include all of these into a single resort fee. That’s great and all, but most people don’t want to pay $30 a day for benefits they have no intention of using.
- Resort fees won’t becoming to non resorts. Sure, you’ll call it a destination fee or some other bullshit fee instead.
The real reason Marriott is so intent on charging these fees is because they don’t pay commission to the online booking sites on these fees. In addition they are able to make their room rates look more appealing during the initial stages of booking in comparison to other hotels if they have hidden fees such as resort fees. The simple fact is that if a charge is unavoidable and must be paid, it should be included in the original listing price. Let’s hope more state attorneys general follow the lead of D.C. and start legal proceedings against Marriott and other chains for this deceptive practice.
Hat tip to VFTW